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William Aikman (1682-1731), Portrait painter

Artist associated with 28 portraits
Born in Aberdeenshire, Aikman studied law at the University of Edinburgh. He took up a career as an artist and, by 1703, was painting portraits professionally in Edinburgh. He sold his family estate near Arbroath to enable him to travel unfettered to Europe to complete his artistic training. Aikman spent three years in Rome, before visiting Turkey and then spent a further period in Rome. He returned to Scotland in 1712, where he made the acquaintance of the poet Allan Ramsay and found an enthusiastic patron in John Campbell, the 2nd Duke of Argyll, who persuaded Aikman to move to London. He established a distinguished portrait practice in London, portraying royalty and many members of the aristocracy.

List Thumbnail

6063

William Kent

by William Aikman
oil on canvas, circa 1723-1725
On display in Room 10 at the National Portrait Gallery
NPG 6063

D544

John Campbell, 2nd Duke of Argyll and Greenwich

by John Simon, after William Aikman
mezzotint, 1719 or after
NPG D544

D545

John Campbell, 2nd Duke of Argyll and Greenwich

by John Simon, after William Aikman
mezzotint, 1719 or after
NPG D545

D3989

Allan Ramsay

by George White, after William Aikman
mezzotint, (1723)
NPG D3989

D9490

John Gay

by George Bickham the Elder, after William Aikman
coloured line engraving, published 1729
NPG D9490

D2752

John Gay

by George Bickham the Elder, after William Aikman
line engraving, published 1729
NPG D2752

D21421

John Campbell, 2nd Duke of Argyll and Greenwich

by Johann Sebastian Müller, after William Aikman
etching, mid 18th century
NPG D21421

D8205

John Gay

after William Aikman
line engraving, mid 18th century
NPG D8205

D21422

John Campbell, 2nd Duke of Argyll and Greenwich

by Jacobus Houbraken, after William Aikman
line engraving, 1735
NPG D21422

D1343

John Campbell, 2nd Duke of Argyll and Greenwich

by Jacobus Houbraken, after William Aikman
line engraving, 1735
NPG D1343

D7094

John Campbell, 2nd Duke of Argyll and Greenwich

by Jacobus Houbraken, after William Aikman
line engraving, 1735
NPG D7094

D3481

William Kent

by Alexander Bannerman, after William Aikman
line engraving, published 1762
NPG D3481

D3482

William Kent

by Alexander Bannerman, after William Aikman
line engraving, published 1762
NPG D3482

D3483

William Kent

by Alexander Bannerman, after William Aikman
line engraving, published 1762
NPG D3483

D3484

William Kent

by Alexander Bannerman, after William Aikman
line engraving, published 1762
NPG D3484

D3485

William Kent

by William Aikman, after Alexander Bannerman
line engraving, published 1762
NPG D3485

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